After winnable games slip away, Gophers refocus

  • Article by: AMELIA RAYNO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 23, 2013 - 6:40 AM
  • 11
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goldengoph3rJan. 23, 1312:31 AM

Good points. I don't believe in moral victories, but losing to Michigan might have some silver linings. The Gophers are a defense-first, rebounding team; they won't win a lot of easy games by lighting it up from the floor. When we forget defense against quality opponents like IU and Michigan, we're liable to give up big runs because we don't have an offensive "stopper". If the Michigan loss helps the Gophs refocus on hustling, stifling defense and great rebounding, that's a positive step. Second, two consecutive losses, even to great teams, should take the bloom off the rose a little and let the Gophers relax on the court. They played very, very tentatively against Indiana in the first half, and looked helpless for times against Michigan. Northwestern is a test to be sure, but they're not Michigan, so we should get back to doing what we do best and grind out a solid win tomorrow.

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cavellJan. 23, 13 9:01 AM

Did we really expect to go down to Indy and win? In their house? Yes, tubby needs to tell his players to make more shots. And turn the ball over less. And stop the other team from scoring so much. I wonder if he can do that?

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njfan08Jan. 23, 13 9:50 AM

Reality, we came back and almost beat Indy. We did dig ourselves quite a hole and if we had gotten a break here or there we could have taken them. AND YES…sometimes you need a break or two to win a game. Defense is the name of the game for the Gophers….it's what sparks their transition offense and what they need to keep up. If moral victories exist it's in learning from your mistakes, and if they've done that they did gain something. Let's give the guys some credit, their losses have been to teams ranked in the top 5, Duke, Indiana and Michigan. Tough matchups for anyone.

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ranger78Jan. 23, 1310:32 AM

Just more excuses. Rodney and Joe are hurt. Boo hoo. Quit turning the ball over a dozen times a half and you beat teams like Michigan and Indiana. It makes it tough when you give up 30 points a game off of turnovers. NW isn't a mystery anymore. You've seen the 1-3-1 zone for years. Figure it out. Sconi plays to slow, plodding style to limit possessions. Make your shots, play D, make free throws and rebound and you'll beat a very pedestrian Sconi team. No excuse for not winning the next four games against NW, Sconi, Nebraska and Iowa. No excuse for not going 13 - 5 in the Big 10. What we'll likely see is 9 - 9 or 10 - 8 because Tubby's teams simply don't hang on to the ball, have too many defensive lapses and too many spells with no offensive production.

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arramsJan. 23, 1311:15 AM

I don't think there are any trap games for the Gophers;the way they get off to slow starts, commit turnovers, miss free throws, and leave opponents open for 3-point shots, every game is a trap. Northwestern is always dangerous and no matter how badly Wisconsin has performed lately,they play rugged defense and never ever let up. They went over 7 minutes without scoring at the end against Michigan State but still lost by only 2 free throws. Saturday at the Kohl Center the Gophers better be wearing their big boy pants because Bo Ryan will have the Badgers stoked.

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kev5115Jan. 23, 1311:33 AM

To start with Tubby has to keep his bench short like maybe 7 or 8 at the very most. The biggest weakness is the lack of talent on the bench. Dre can't afford to be getting stupid fouls the first 5 minutes of the game. If he does that will be a one way ticket to the bench. This team has the talent but I'm not sure Tubby knows what to do with it or how to use it to maximize the talent.

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reason4Jan. 23, 1312:01 PM

Tubby mentioning the lack of intensity in practice THE DAY BEFORE A GAME says a lot to me. If you are running an intense practice the day before a game, there is NO WAY the players can be 100% for game day. Poor judgment on Tubby's part. You rest players before a game so they can come out with the intensity that we've all seen them play at. They all looked tired during the Indiana and Michigan games. It's one thing to have a shoot around and practice free throws, it's another to have an intense defensive practice the day before a game. Tubby...don't work them hard the day before a game...and watch them fly on game day.

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rdilleyJan. 23, 1312:55 PM

It's been shown game after game for over three years now! Tubby Smith is waaaaaaay overrated as a coach. He talks about "fixing the turnover" problem like it is just something they can do, just like that. Until the players can start thinking a little now and then, it will never chanqe. Maybe they don't have the smarts!!! Maybe, never know.

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rdilleyJan. 23, 13 1:10 PM

I hate to keep being critical and negative toward the Gophs, but one more thing is so obvious....they have to be the most undisciplined team in the conference. And, once more that is attributable straight to poor coaching!!! When will the AD wake up and take come action???

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obadiahoceanJan. 23, 13 4:00 PM

I was at the game. And I'm still pissed we didn't win. Come on gophers. Play like you have passion every minute of the game! It's been a while for gophers fans to get excited about their basketball team!

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